Dr. Youngran Park

Dr. Park received her Ph.D. in Pathobiology from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and is currently a postdoctoral research fellow at JHU. She received Pathology Young Investigator Day Award at 2016 and 2017 for her study of ARID1A function in DNA repair. She strongly believes the spirit of translational research is to alleviate human suffering through research.

Immune cells and endometriosis pain

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent inflammatory disorder in women. This disease leads to dysmenorrhea, pelvic pain, and infertility. The immune reaction is one of the most widely accepted pathologies of endometriosis. Estrogen dysfunction stimulates immune cells in the peritoneal cavity affecting not only T & B lymphocytes, peritoneal macrophages, but also inflammatory mediators. In a previous study, M2 macrophages have been shown to play key roles in promoting endometriosis progression. Importantly, there is crosstalk among macrophages, natural killer (NK) cells, and T…

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Increased expression of epithelial cell adhesion molecule and its possible role in epithelial-mesenchymal transition in endometriosis.

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disease that functional endometrial tissue exists outside both the uterine cavity and myometrium. The pathogenesis of endometriosis remains unclear and controversial. According to the implantation theory, which is the most well-known, migration and invasion are two critical processes for the development of endometriosis. Accumulating evidence demonstrated that endometriosis has mobile and invasive features. Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) has been more attractive as one of the essential molecular mechanisms contributing to metastasis and invasion, which are critical for…

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Local inflammation and follicle development in women with ovarian endometriosis

Endometriosis, a cause of subfertility, is found in almost 50% of infertile women. The elevated levels of cytokines in the follicular fluid of patients with endometriosis might account for the ovulatory dysfunction. Granulosa cells (GCs) play important roles in follicular development. In patients with endometriosis, abnormalities in GCs might impair oocyte maturation and lead to poor oocyte quality. Nuclear factor k B (NF-kB) was the key point in inflammation. Activated by inflammatory cytokines, NF-kB was involved in cascade signal amplification…

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Race, socioeconomic status, and health

Racial disparities in health have been long noted in the United States. The differences in socioeconomic status across racial groups are a major contributor to racial disparities in health. However, race reflects multiple dimensions of social inequality. Understanding and effectively addressing racial disparities in health requires an appreciation of the contributing factors that importantly affect the racial patterning of the distribution of disease. In this paper, Dr. Collins group provides an overview of recent research on racial disparities in health…

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Immune System, Cytokines and Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent chronic disease. Diagnosing endometriosis is difficult because the signs and symptoms vary considerably. Therefore, the discovery of a reliable non-invasive diagnostic biomarker would represent a major advance for the clinical diagnosis of endometriosis.  It has been addressed that endometriosis is an inflammatory disease, where endocrine-immunological interactions are probably involved in the pathogenesis of the disease. The study of some cytokines as predictors or discriminators of the disease is promising. One possible cause for the development of…

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miR-92a and progesterone resistance in endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. This incidence of this disease is 35% to 50% among those who suffer from chronic pelvic pain and infertility, which has a negative effect on the quality of life and on health. Recent genome-wide associations studies have revealed a strong connection between endometriosis and the 10q23–26 chromosome loci where PTEN is encoded. PTEN is a tumor-suppressor gene, and its functional inactivation is closely related to the endometrial diseases. In endometriosis, it was demonstrated that the…

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tRNA-derived fragments in ovarian endometriosis?

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent mysterious disorder characterized by the presence of endometrium outside the normal location of the uterus cavity. This disease affects approximately 10% of reproductive-aged women and becomes a major reason for infertility in reproductive-aged women and dysmenorrhea in teenage girls. Numerous studies have focused on the pathogenesis of endometriosis, but the exact mechanism of disease progressions still remains unclear. Therefore, it is essential to explore new key molecules that may play important roles in endometriosis. Transfer RNA…

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Early Life Factors for Endometriosis

Endometriosis affects approximately 10% of reproductive-aged women. Despite the significant impact, the etiology of endometriosis is still unclear. A recent systematic review of 15 studies of adolescents found that overall 65% of girls undergoing laparoscopic investigation were diagnosed with endometriosis. The high prevalence of endometriosis among young women suggests the onset of the disease might be earlier than anticipated. Research that focuses on potential factors in early life, including exposures in utero, may provide insights on the etiology of endometriosis.…

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Regulation of Inflammation in Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent and multifaceted gynecological condition. Unfortunately, this disease frequently causes chronic and cyclic pelvic pain. Though there are several treatments are available, there is not an actual cure for this disease. Therefore, the development of new therapy based on the understanding of endometriosis is highly important.  Endometriosis is frequently considered as an inflammatory disease. In most cases, the pain is due to an invasion of endometrial cells and pro-inflammatory mediators on the nerve fibers. Therefore, Dr. García-Gómez…

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Phytotherapy as an alternative endometriosis treatment

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent gynecological disease that affects 5–10% of women in fertile age. Different therapeutic strategies are available to treat this disease, such as surgery, hormonal therapies, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.  Medical therapy usually consists of different hormonal drugs, including combined hormonal contraceptives, progestogens, anti-progestogens, and so on. To date, there is no robust evidence to support a specific hormonal therapy over the others. Although multiple pharmacological strategies are available, a recent systematic review showed that the efficacy of…

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The role of acidic ribosomal protein P1 in Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. The disease develops and composed of the ectopic endometrial-like tissue which establishes primarily in the pelvic cavity. Previous findings clearly show that estrogen-related factors are critical for endometriosis development and progression. However, we do have a limited understanding of the complexity of the environment. RPLP1 is part of the ribosomal subunit which functions in regulating protein elongation translation factors. Interestingly, its expression is regulated by the estrogen target gene, c-Myc. According to previous research, RPLP1…

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Impact of Genetic Variations in Endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. This disease affects approximately 7% to 10% of reproductive-aged women and causes negative impacts on society. The underlying causes are unclear; therefore, the understanding of this disease remains a major clinical challenge. Endometriosis has a complicated etiology, influenced by genetic and environmental factors. Thanks to the current advances in genetics, more than 40 genetic risk factors have been discovered in endometriosis. Also, a significant amount of somatic mutation has been found, expanding the possible functions…

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CXCR4 or CXCR7 antagonists as novel therapies for endometriosis

Endometriosis is a common, estrogen-dependent chronic inflammatory disorder. It affects approximately 5-10% of reproductive-aged women and 20-50% of infertile women. Endometriosis also has a significant social and psychological impact on the lives of women. Despite such a significant burden, there is no endometriosis-specific treatment available. Bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMDCs) are shown to be involved in the pathogenesis of endometriosis by contributing regeneration and vascularization at the endometriotic lesions. In cancer and/or inflammation conditions, BMDCs get stimulated by chemokines and…

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When to do - and when not to do surgery for endometriosis

Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent disorder. It was estimated to affect about 176 million women in the world and usually causes pelvic pain and infertility. Unfortunately, the current understanding of this disease is very limited. Though there are many remaining questions, the key question is how to treat patients with the disease.  Several managements are available such as hormonal contraceptives, progestins, and gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists (GnRH-a) or antagonists. Still, the most frequently used management is laparoscopic surgery. Current therapeutic decision-making is…

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The role of inflammation, oxidative stress, angiogenesis, and apoptosis in the pathophysiology of endometriosis

Endometriosis is a very common gynecological disorder affecting approximately 10% of reproductive-aged women, and it is known by the abnormal growth of endometrial stroma and glands outside the uterus. Though the pathogenesis of endometriosis is not clearly understood so far, several findings suggest that inflammation plays a critical role in endometriosis initiation and progression. Also, other critical factors such as oxidative stress, apoptosis signaling, and angiogenesis are suggested. In this review, the Dr. Asemi group from Iran summarized the current…

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Endometriosis features vs Patient age

Endometriosis, a common gynecological disease, has significant negative impacts on patients’ daily life. Especially in younger women who have yet to achieve pregnancy, effective management should consider the disease progression. Though it is still under debate, some people suggest that the severity of lesions increases with patient age. This suggests that endometriosis lesions might grow over time. To assess the relationship between age and the type, stage and location of endometriotic lesions, the Dr. Roman group from France performed a…

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A new target for the treatment of endometriosis?

Endometriosis affects around 10% of women in reproductive age, estimating more than 176 million women worldwide. Inflammation in the pelvic cavity is very common in endometriosis patients. Therefore, there are high concentrations of cytokines and immune cells in the peritoneal fluids.  The concentrations of the pro-inflammatory prostaglandins (PG)E2 and PGF2a are increased in peritoneal fluid of endometriosis, compared to the healthy women. The main reason for this increase is due to the overexpression of genes that encode prostaglandin synthases in…

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Machine Learning Classifiers for Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a complicated gynecological disorder that affects about 176 million women worldwide. It significantly impairs mental and physical quality of life in patients but the etiology is poorly understood. Endometriosis also causes a large economic burden due to loss of workdays and the health-care costs due to hospitalization and medication. Unfortunately, a definitive clinical symptom or minimally invasive diagnostic method is not available and this causes on average 4 to 11 years diagnostic latency. Therefore, early intervention is crucial…

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Endometriosis as an epigenetically regulated disease

Endometriosis is defined as the abnormal growth of endometrial tissue outside of the uterus. It affects about 10% of reproductive age women resulting in severe pain and infertility. Among various theories of endometriosis pathogenesis, not a single one has successfully elucidated the mechanism of endometriosis. In recent years, many studies focus on the epigenetic signature of endometrial cells to understand endometriosis pathogenesis. Epigenetic change does not involve alteration of the DNA sequence but has significant effects on gene expression. DNA…

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Does ovarian endometriosis affect oocyte quality?

Endometriosis is a very common gynecological disorder affecting women in their reproductive years. It is reported that patients with endometriosis have reduced implantation and pregnancy rates compared to healthy women. According to the various previous studies, the quality of the oocytes seems to be highly affected by the ovarian endometriosis. Previous studies showed that the implantation rate was significantly reduced when people received embryos derived from endometriotic ovaries compared to the people received embryos from healthy donors. Interestingly, it is…

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